Employees at Solihull-headquartered Paragon Banking Group have surpassed their annual volunteering target for 2023 after forging a strong relationship with Newlife the Charity for Disabled Children.
Paragon’s number of volunteering days for the year to the end of September 2023 totalled 469, compared to 286 in 2022.
The year saw a 30% employee participation rate across the Group, with The London Benchmarking Group quoting an average employee participation figure of 14% across the UK.
As a specialist financial services provider, the Group is conscious of the potential impact it may have on society and the environment. Therefore, community volunteering projects are focused on supporting people who are experiencing poverty, strengthening the education of school children and young people, and improving the local environment.
Paragon employees completed 54 volunteering days within the education strategy, offering support for careers fairs and work experience events, including interview skills preparation, involving schools in the Birmingham and Solihull area.
The year was bolstered by Paragon’s strong relationship with Newlife, the bank’s charity partner for 2022. Newlife is the largest charity provider of disability equipment and support for disabled children and their families across the UK. In total, 38 employees volunteered their time at Newlife’s headquarters, whilst Paragon also supported Newlife by hosting on-site de-labelling sessions at its Homer Road and Southampton office, with a total of 115 employees taking part.
Paragon fosters strong relationships with several other charities, such as St Basils, Canal & River Trust, Bedworth Community Grocery Store, and SIFA Fireside.
Other local projects supported include the Walsall Black Sisters Collective, St. Joseph’s Care Home in Harborne, and Blue Cross. Employees are also given the freedom to arrange their own volunteering day for causes that are important to them.
Paragon’s London office also got involved in volunteering, with 20 individuals completing a team clear-up project with Thames21 at Pool Linear Park, Lewisham.
Employees also dedicated their time to collecting 114 bags of items in December, making them into hampers for families in need this Christmas.
Darryl Mowbray, Development Consultant at Paragon Bank, commented on the success of this year’s volunteering events: “Our employees have shown incredible commitment throughout the year in supporting the community. Whether it’s strengthening the education of young people, supporting those who are experiencing poverty or improving the local environment, our volunteers have invested their time to make a difference.
“We’ve seen a big increase in activity with our volunteering programme in 2022/2023 and anticipate higher levels of engagement throughout 2024. On a personal note, I’m incredibly proud of achieving our goals and very grateful to work for an organisation that enables employees to volunteer.”
Craig Stewart, Head of Corporate and Community Partnerships for Newlife, commented on Paragon’s contribution: “Paragon employees have been absolutely fantastic at donating their time to support Newlife. From visiting us at our Cannock HQ, to hosting us in Solihull and Southampton – everyone has put in a shift!”
If you would like further information on offering corporate volunteering opportunities to employees at Paragon Bank, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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